including front-mounted brooms, multi-task snow
removal equipment, severe-duty plow trucks and
large capacity rotary plows, along with other inno-
vative applications of airport equipment.
For many years, MHT would clear around
elevated lights with small pickup plows and hand
shovels. During this very laborious activity, several
lights would be broken, which became a burden to
the airfield lighting budget.
There have been several “light-clearing”
plow designs, and most have had some success.
We married a New Holland TV145 with the
Fortbrand VAMMAS light clearing plow, then
raised the tractor by replacing the turf tires and
wheels with a set of 14.9R46 (tall, thin agricultural) wheels and tires. These tires and wheels
provide 24 inches of clearance, which allows
the tractor to traverse safely over the top of the
elevated runway and taxiway lights.
Light clearing now can be completed within a
single eight-hour shift with little or no damage.
The procedure includes working with two rotary
plows, thus eliminating any windrows. During an
extended storm and/or storms of great accumula-
tions, a light-clearing crew can operate under the
control of the snow boss without the need of put-
ting a crew member out into the elements.
The most recent innovative technology application
is our in-pavement snow melters. In 2010 MHT
began a project to replace four existing snow
melting pits. The existing units were installed in
1993 and were designed to melt approximately
120 tons of snow per hour at each of the two
locations. As the airport grew and these melters
aged, replacement was required and capacity was
The project was awarded to a local contractor, and Trecan Snow Melters were employed to
provide 300 tons per hour snow melting capacity
at each of the two locations. The melters utilize
natural gas for fuel. Besides being the most modern
design and offering reduced operating cost, these
melters can be operated and monitored remotely
from the cab of the ramp plow pushing the snow
into them. This single operator operation is the
most efficient snow melting available.
The terminal ramp plows always have pushed
snow into the melters at each location. During the
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16 AIRPORTMAGAZINE.NET | APRIL/MAY 2012